PipeChat Digest #4567 - Sunday, June 20, 2004
 
Additional area theatre organ events for July ATOS NATIONAL CONVENTION at
  by <MUSCUR@aol.com>
Re: Ray Charles' Funeral--off topic
  by <RMB10@aol.com>
Re: Ray Charles' Funeral--off topic
  by "T.Desiree' Hines" <nicemusica@yahoo.com>
Lead for boat ballast
  by "Andy Lawrence" <andy@ablorgans.com>
Re: Lead for boat ballast
  by "Andy Lawrence" <andy@ablorgans.com>
Re: Lead for boat ballast (OT)
  by <Myosotis51@aol.com>
 

(back) Subject: Additional area theatre organ events for July ATOS NATIONAL CONVENTION attendees From: <MUSCUR@aol.com> Date: Wed, 16 Jun 2004 18:55:30 EDT   THE AL RINGLING THEATRE CELEBRATES THE BARABOO CIRCUS FESTIVAL with Theatre=20 Pipe Organ performances by DENNIS JAMES, June 30 to July 3, 2004- Baraboo,=20 Wisconsin   =B7 June 30 and July 2 - The Baraboo Theatre Guild presents Live On Stage: "= Ice=20 Cream 7 Times a Day." This play tells the story of the Ringling Brothers=20 before they reached circus fame. Performance June 30 at 7:30 p.m. and July 2= at=20 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $12 adults and $10 seniors/children. As=20= a=20 very special feature, Dennis James will play the 1928 Barton Theatre Organ=20 before and at intermission at each performance.   =B7 July 1 - THEATRE TOURS featuring theatre organist Dennis James, tour tim= es=20 9:00 a.m., 10 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.=20   =B7 July 1 at 3:00 p.m. SILENT FILM CLASSIC featuring scoring by Dennis Jame= s.=20 This feature film with live organ music accompaniment is free and open to th= e=20 public.=20   Information and tickets will be available by contacting the Al Ringling=20 Theatre at 608-356-8864, by e-mail at ringling@baraboo.com or by writing ART= =20 Friends, P.O. Box 381, Baraboo, WI 53913   THE AL RINGLING THEATRE:   The Al. Ringling was "America's Prettiest Playhouse" from the very beginning= ..=20 The American Theatre Historical Society says it "pointed the way to the grea= t=20 palatial theatres of the following decade...One of the finest examples of=20 palatial design applied to a motion picture theatre in this country. The env= y of=20 Broadway."   By 1900, the Ringling Brothers had one of the largest circus shows on the=20 road, and began absorbing other circuses. By the time they were able to buy=20= out=20 James A. Bailey's show, the year after Bailey's death in 1907, they had unde= r=20 their control the largest circus in America: The Ringling Brothers and Barnu= m &=20 Bailey Circus. The Ringling Brothers portion of the circus maintained its=20 winter quarters in Baraboo. Al. Ringling was Baraboo's leading citizen, one=20= of=20 the best-known names in Wisconsin, and a national and world traveler, with w= orld=20 renown due to the circus. During his visits to Europe, he was fascinated wit= h=20 the beauty and majesty of the European Opera Houses. Yet Baraboo was home,=20 and it appears from the very beginning that the theatre project was intended= as=20 a memorial gift to the city.   After only seven months of construction and at a cost of around $100,000, th= e=20 magnificent theatre opened on Wednesday, November 17, 1915, hailed at the=20 time as the greatest event in the history of Baraboo. If it was an extravaga= nt=20 theatre for a town of that size, its character as a memorial was clear and=20 recognized even as it was being built. The first movie was shown on November= 22,=20 1915. But sadly, less than seven weeks after the theatre opened, Al. Ringlin= g=20 passed away just after noon on New Year's Day, 1916. The entire city of Bara= boo=20 went into mourning. Services at the German Lutheran Church were in both Germ= an=20 and English.   The Al. Ringling Theatre was built with the intention of providing Baraboo=20 with a multi-purpose entertainment facility. In the early years Baraboo was=20 fortunate in being able to host touring companies of major Broadway producti= ons=20 which would pause at Baraboo en route to Minneapolis from either Chicago or=20 Milwaukee. During its first fourteen years, the Al. Ringling hosted 109 tour= ing=20 shows on its stage. Prices ranged from 50 cents to $1.50. Actors and scenery= =20 came by rail freight carts and Pullman cars, and theatre tickets could be=20 purchased at rail stations up to 50 miles away. The seven daily trains passi= ng=20 through Baraboo provided access to the theatre for its patrons. Notable perf= ormers=20 who have graced the Al. Ringling stage include Lionel Barrymore in "The Claw= "=20 in 1922, Fiske O'Hara, and May Robson. Plays included Miss Lulu Bett by Zona= =20 Gale of Portage, Hamlet, The Mikado, George White Scandals, Showboat, and HM= S=20 Pinafore.   After Al. Ringling's death, his widow was uninterested in owning the theatre= ,=20 so it passed into the control of the four surviving brothers. They offered i= t=20 in 1917 to the Town of Baraboo for use as a municipal theatre. Legal=20 difficulties surrounding restrictions in the offer led to some local opposit= ion to the=20 gift, and it was withdrawn the following year. As the brothers died, their=20 interests passed to their heirs, eventually to be consolidated under the con= trol=20 of Henry Ringling, Jr. He operated the theatre until his death in 1952, at=20 which time the theatre was sold out of the family's hands.   =20 THE BARTON THEATRE PIPE ORGAN:   The original theatre pipe organ installed in the Al. Ringling Theatre was a=20 Style 1, Opus 9202 Hope Jones unit, manufactured by the Wurlitzer Co. The=20 instrument was purchased from their San Francisco showrooms and shipped to B= araboo=20 in September 1915. The instrument was employed to accompany silent film=20 presentations, to give concerts, and to provide musical prologues for live=20 performances. By 1928 its capabilities and technology were outdated in compa= rison to=20 the newer, more sophisticated instruments being produced. Rather than update= =20 and augment the existing organ, it was decided to replace it with one=20 manufactured by the Barton Co. of Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The Hope Jones unit, m= inus the=20 percussion and sound effects, was sold to the Baraboo Evangelical Church, wh= ere=20 it served that congregation for 40 years.   Golden-voiced Barton organs, famous for their tonal beauty, had been=20 installed in many leading theatres across the country. In fact, the largest=20= theatre=20 organ ever constructed, located in the Chicago Stadium, was built by the Bar= ton=20 Company. The Barton organ company was the fifth leading theatre organ build= er=20 in America. Company founder Dan Barton was a musician and had toured with=20 Chautauquas, dance bands, carnivals, dog and pony shows, Uncle Tom's Cabin s= hows,=20 and, in 1909, with the Ringling Brothers Circus. In fact, the organ console=20 style used in the Al. Ringling Theatre, and many other installations, is=20 referred to as the "circus wagon,'' because of its lavish use of carvings an= d the=20 red and gold coloring. The "Mighty Barton" features 597 pipes, plus drums,=20 bells, wood blocks, bird calls and thunder.=20   Shortly after the nine rank organ was installed, talking pictures made their= =20 debut at the Al. Ringling. In 1929, sound equipment was permanently added to= =20 the theatre. Soon afterward the Great Depression put an end to the economic=20 practicality of the professional stage shows. The new Barton continued to gi= ve=20 Sunday concerts, however, and to provide musical prologues to the movie=20 showings. This curtailed usage continued for the most part until the mid-194= 0s when=20 the instrument was retired and used only for special occasions. The Barton=20 returned to active duty for a short time in the early 1950s in an attempt to= give=20 the theatre an edge in its fight against the new entertainment=20 form--television. In the early 70s, a group of dedicated volunteers began r= estoring the=20 instrument to its original glory. They emptied dust from the pipes, patched=20= and=20 replaced the miles and miles of wiring, and cleaned off the grime from 30 ye= ars=20 of coal heat. The organ is now in excellent playing condition and, through t= he=20 efforts of dedicated volunteers, will continue to delight Al. Ringling=20 audiences for generations to come.   DENNIS JAMES, THEATRE ORGANIST   Internationally celebrated theatre organist Dennis James appeared most=20 recently at the Al Ringling Theatre on April 1, 2004 accompanying silent fil= m=20 comedies for the theatre's Lively Arts Series. With countless performances a= t=20 theatres up and down Hollywood Boulevard since his 1999 Hollywood debut, the= atre=20 organist Dennis James has carved a permanent in Hollywood's entertainment=20 history. Following an extensive nationwide search, James was selected to de= but the=20 El Capitan Theatre's Mighty Wurlitzer pipe organ. Appointed the theatre's=20 premiere House Organist, James has since appeared before tens of thousands=20 enthusiastic patrons at the Hollywood landmark. Of James' debut performance=20= of the=20 restored silent film classic PETER PAN at the El Capitan, the Theatre Organ=20 Journal correspondent Rob Richards reported: "Dennis James played a meticulo= usly=20 prepared score . . . a complete sellout, rumor has it tickets were being sca= lped=20 outside the theatre for $100 a seat!" James also performs solo=20 organ-accompanied silent films at Hollywood's restored Egyptian Theatre jus= t a few blocks=20 east of the El Capitan plus the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and Royce=20 Hall (UCLA). Recently named "Hollywood's International Ambassador of the Si= lent=20 Film," James' silent film revivals, already a Hollywood tradition, now tour=20 worldwide with performances upcoming throughout Australia and New Zealand la= ter=20 this year.   Listing sent from: Silent Film Concerts 7095 Hollywood Boulevard, #483 Hollywood, CA 90028-8903 USA Phone: 323-883-1514 E-mail: muscur@aol.com   To be removed from this mailing list, please respond with written request to= =20 muscur@aol.com   =20 Listing sent from: Silent Film Concerts 7095 Hollywood Boulevard, #483 Hollywood, CA 90028-8903 USA Phone: 323-883-1514 E-mail: muscur@aol.com   To be removed from this mailing list, please respond with written request to= =20 muscur@aol.com  
(back) Subject: Re: Ray Charles' Funeral--off topic From: <RMB10@aol.com> Date: Sat, 19 Jun 2004 21:40:42 EDT   Bud wrote: >I grew up in the Deep South ... my grandfather was laid out in the front =   >parlor with an open casket; both my grandfather's and my father's >caskets were open at the (Southern Baptist) funeral service in the >church, and EVERYBODY went up for a "last look" ... then the funeral >director closed the lid and screwed it down, just like it was described >in the earlier post. > >Something I'D note is that back then, children were NOT shielded from >death OR the funeral rites ... I was six when Daddy died; I sat at the >wake with the rest of the family; I went to the funeral. Same with my >grandfather ... I think I was about 9 or 10 when he died. The men of the =   >family sat up all night at the funeral home until they were buried. SNIP >Small-town funeral homes aren't bad, but the big chains will steal you >blind. All they look at is total "sales per unit." > >Me, I want a pine box, and they're HARD to come by these days, thanks to =   >"death industry" lobbying for laws requiring embalming, hermetically >sealed metal coffins, etc. etc. etc. We have the Orthodox Jews to thank >that they haven't succeeded, at least in SOME states. Ok, this is off topic, but I'm going to reply, being a funeral director. =   Each region of the country, and each ethnic sub-group, has its own = "quirks" when it comes to death and mourning. I am most qualified to speak on the =   Southern region, and can speak on both White and African-American = traditions. The South has held on to "tradition" where other regions have embraced = the willingness try new things. African Americans have been the slowest to change, that is why they have a lower rate of cremation as compared to = White Protestants, even in the South, which has the lowest cremation rate in = the country. The "pass and review" at the end of the service, is a hold over from the country and is rarely seen in cities any more, except in African American =   services. White country funerals still do it. I work at a funeral home = that does a lot of funerals "in the country" and we often leave the casket open during the funeral or open it at the end of the service = for people to walk past one last time. Personally, I find it awful, but if = the family requests it, we have to let them do it. We can't deny them the = right to look a their loved one. As to embalming, caskets, and such, embalming is not required by law = unless a type of service you have selected requires it, such as an open casket viewing. It is done for public health reasons. A person has a right to = buy whatever casket they want. A funeral home has a selection of caskets, = but pine boxes are usually not shown. If a person wants a plain box, all they = need to do is ask for an Orthodox casket. The Jewish caskets are unfinished = wood, plain lining, made with no metal parts and put together with pegs. If = that doesn't suit your needs, there is always the option to go to a casket = store or order off of the internet. Don't get me started on corporately owned funeral homes....I worked for = one for 4 years. Then I got smart and left. (They did pay for me to go to mortuary school, however!) If you've got questions, feel free to email me privately. I know that I = am not the only funeral director on the list, so my FD brother might want to =   chime in on anything that I have left out, or add anything that pertains = for Northeastern funeral culture. Monty Bennett  
(back) Subject: Re: Ray Charles' Funeral--off topic From: "T.Desiree' Hines" <nicemusica@yahoo.com> Date: Sat, 19 Jun 2004 19:46:20 -0700 (PDT)   Even at a young age of 25, my own personal life has not been without very, = very, very trying times. That includes the loss of 2 siblings by the age = of 16...a sister to Aplastic Anemia in 1992, and a brother to a bullet in = 1995. As one of hte resident African-americans on the list, I can say that Open = casket funerals are just tradition in the black bereavement process. Its = like...we cant put our loved-ones to rest with one last touch or kiss. = It's just something we have to do. I remember my brother, Richard spending = 15 minutes over my sister Phyllis whispering to her sibling love. I my = self...had the typical reaction, calling for 5 people to hold me up. The Music, to put us on topic, for black funerals almost always includes a = soulful soloist singing Precious Lord. My being a pipe organist, and with = quite a few of my family members enjoying this new exposure, a few havs = said that they would love to have the pipe organ played at their funerals. = My mother particularly, since her exposure to the organ, has requested = many organ lollipops for her funeral: Widor, Gigout, the Albinoni for = organ and strings, as she often talks about my starting at the violin and = how every tie she hears that piece, she thinks about my practicing the = violin, and then falling in love with the organ. just some random blurbs over a Chinese take out dinner. Monty B is more than qualified, and already has, to give opinion.       From Desiree' T. Desiree' Hines Chicago, IL 60610 ---------------------------- For Compositions by Desiree' Frog Music Press www.frogmusic.com ------------------------------- FOR CONCERTS BY DESIREE' http://concertartist.info/bios/hines.html --------------------------------- Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Mail - 50x more storage than other providers!
(back) Subject: Lead for boat ballast From: "Andy Lawrence" <andy@ablorgans.com> Date: Sat, 19 Jun 2004 22:46:06 -0500   Anyone know of an organbuilder with significant amounts of scrap lead = lying around? There is a WAY cool boat building project going on in Burlington, =   the "Lois McClure" replica of the old canal schooners that made Burlington =   possible back in the day. The boat needs 30,000 pounds of ballast. My former employer, Russell and Co, had scrap lead from pipe making that = turned out to weigh 6000 pounds, and it was not a very big pile. Some of it was squashed old pipes, but most of it was just little offcuts from pipe making. We donated all that (and they came to get it), but they could use =   more. They need it pretty soon though.   Andy   A.B.Lawrence Pipe Organ Service PO Box 111 Burlington, VT 05402 (802)578-3936 Visit our website at www.ablorgans.com  
(back) Subject: Re: Lead for boat ballast From: "Andy Lawrence" <andy@ablorgans.com> Date: Sat, 19 Jun 2004 22:50:11 -0500   I meant to include the website for the museum building this schooner. Its =   www.lcmm.org (stands for Lake Champlain Maritime Museum)   A.B.Lawrence Pipe Organ Service PO Box 111 Burlington, VT 05402 (802)578-3936 Visit our website at www.ablorgans.com  
(back) Subject: Re: Lead for boat ballast (OT) From: <Myosotis51@aol.com> Date: Sun, 20 Jun 2004 01:45:15 EDT   Hello andy@ablorgans.com,     In reference to your comment: Anyone know of an organbuilder with significant amounts of scrap lead = lying around?   ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Have they considered checking out a rifle/pistol range? MUCH lead can be sifted out of the sand piles behind the targets.   Victoria